The Rosary is divided into five decades. Each decade represents a mystery or event in the life of Jesus. There are four sets of "Mysteries of the Rosary" (Joyful, Luminous, Sorrowful, and Glorious). These four "Mysteries of the Rosary" therefore contain, a total of twenty mysteries. The Joyful, Luminous, Sorrowful, and Glorious Mysteries are then said on specific days of the week (see each set of mysteries below). During private recitation of the Rosary, each decade requires meditation on a specific mystery. Public recitation of the Rosary (two or more people), requires a leader to announce each of the mysteries before the decade, and start each prayer (see "The Family Rosary" below).
The Apostle's Creed is said on the Crucifix; the Our Father is said on each of the Large Beads; the Hail Mary is said on each of the Small Beads; the Glory Be after the three Hail Mary's at the beginning of the Rosary, and after each decade of Small Beads. In June 13, 1917, Our Lady asked that an additional prayer be added after each decade of the Rosary (see prayers at the end of this document). It is a prayer of forgiveness to Jesus and is said following the Glory Be after each decade only.